Newsletter - Volume 7, Issue 49
The story of First Nation's soccer player Harry Manson (Xul-si-malt) and his team, the Nanaimo Indian Warriors, begins in the early 1890's at a time when interest in soccer was rapidly growing in the coal-producing region around the town of Nanaimo on eastern Vancouver Island.
The most outstanding of the indigenous players was Xul-si-malt (One-who-leaves-his-mark), born in 1879, who was compelled at an early age to assume the English name "Harry Manson". At the age of 18 he made his competitive debut in a heated rivalry between the Nanaimo Thistles and Snuneymuxw.
The Nanaimo Thistles recruited him full-time into their line up and they reached the final of the British Columbia Intermediate Challenge Cup against Victoria YMCA. Two years later, Manson was convinced that they had the necessary talent to compete against the best intermediate teams in B.C. and formally organized the Nanaimo Indian Wanderers AFC.
Mansons' athletic abilities and his leadership qualities on the pitch earned him the captaincy of the Wanderers. In 1902, Nanaimo would form an all-star team to compete for the senior Challenge Cup. Eventually Nanaimo triumphed and Manson and his friends be-came the first indigenous players to win a B.C. Provincial Championship.
On November 9, 2014, a group of 14 of the Manson family attended the induction ceremony in Vaughan, Ontario. The Mansons, Emmy, Trey, Dean, Harriet, Gary, Donna, Jerome, Meade, Mia, Beckie Wesley and Adam along with Robert Janning and his parents traveled on the weekend of November 7th, 8th and 9th, to Toronto and attended the events.
See the full story and pictures below